Pros All audio codecs covered except DTS-HD MA, plays DVD-Audio discs and CDs and offers a 7.1 output (the only one to do this)
Cons Clumsy remote - flip down door attactive but unnecessary
Summary After getting the first Panasonic Blu-ray player for my main HT room, the DMP-BD10 and upgrading it to version 2.0 for Dolby TRUEHD and DTS-HD HR decoding, the purchase of this DMP-BD10A with the upgrade already done plus five free BD discs inside was a no-brainer for the master bedroom's HDTV set.
I have used the DMP-BD10 since December and found it to be a solid unit and it plays everything except HD-DVDs and SACDs and does it well.
This newer "A" suffix model is identical to the first one with the advanced audio decoding upgrades already done.
Only the remote on this "A" model is now black instead of silver and the logos for Dolby TRUEHD and DTS-HD HR are on the case along with Dolby Digital Plus (as before).
If you want to use the 7.1 audio inputs on your AV receiver and don't have HDMI inputs on it, this BD player is also for you-the only BD player that has these.
Video upconversion is excellent for standard DVDs and the 3:2 pulldown works great,too.
Although this unit does not offer DTS-HD Master Audio decoding, no BD player to date does, either:
I wonder if once a player actually decodes MA, will anyone tell the difference vs. like I did between the standard DTS and DTS-HD HR?
Additionally, upgrades have to be done with discs from the manufacturer or downloaded to CD-Rs vs. using an online hookup for some players, as no jack is available.
BD-Java works well on BD movies that have it and I experienced no problems on either unit to date.
This unit does not support 1080p/24, but unless your particular display demands this support, do not stop from buying this player because of this:
1080p/60 is just fine on both of my HDTVs (different type HDTV sets).
So if you want a great player and some free BD discs to start you out with, great hookup possiblities (7.1 analogue), ablility to play almost everything (including DVD-Audio) and all the advanced audio codes (exception DTS-HD MA), this Blu-ray player is for you!
Pros Good image and sound via HDMI; 5 Free movies in the Box
Cons Flip down tray; no ethernet port for firmware update; akward remote
Summary Just purchased a few days ago and lived up to expectations. The deciding factor in my purchase was definitely the 5 free bluy ray disc included in the box, not to mention my familiarity with Panasonic DVD players. After watching all of the 5 Bluy Ray Disc include I came to the conclusion that some movies looked better than others especially Pirates of The Caribbean: Dead man’s Chest which looked amazing considering standard DVD already has good image quality. Also I was blown away (literally) by the sound quality via my hdmi connection. Yes, Blu Ray DOES look better than standard DVD, but the difference is not as drastic as SDTV to HDTV. Only problem with design of player is the front flip-down panel has to be pulled down to change disc and the remote has a “secret” (it’s a secret if you don’t read the manual! LOL!) compartment for the setup controls. Also there is no Ethernet port but you can update the firmware via cd-r disc by going to Panasonic.net. DVD up conversion was solid on this unit as well. If you can get pass the flip down panel I would highly recommend this unit as a stand alone player.
Pros Excellent 1080P picture quality, SD DVD upconversion, and 7.1 HD sound capability.
Cons None ... as good as it gets.
Summary I purchased the new Panasonic Blu-ray player this week at Best Buy for $540 (10% discount). To get the discount, all I did was ask for the 10% off based on a coupon I had (at home) from Citibank for the Magnolia Center at Best Buy. The sales guy did not even blink...and did not require the coupon.
The quality is both in the sound system and panel ... the new model 1080P panels really show off the picture quality of this blu-ray player. I recently purchased the new Panasonic TH-50PZ700U 50" Plasma Panel and the Panasonic SA-XR700 7 x 100W 7.1-Channel Digital Home Theater Receiver ... now, with the new Panasonic DMP-BD10A Blu-ray player, the picture knocks your socks off!
This product rates a 10 because it also includes 5 blu-ray movies worth at least $100!
Pros Impressive Hi-Def Picture, DVD-Audio, Super Upscaling of Standard DVD's
Cons No Ethernet connection.
Summary I work for a professional AV company so we have gone thru and assortment of these players on custom installs using various manfacturers of HD-DVD and Blu-Ray including Toshiba, Sony, LG and Samsung.
Regarding Dual Deck players I found the LG BH100 horrible, and the LGBH200 OK. However if you want a really great Blu-Ray deck my only my choice is Panasonic!
Look, circa Fall 2007 you had pretty limited choices and a technology continuing to evolve. In all of my testing, I found the Pansonic BD10A the best. Relatively fast disk loads and ALWAYS an impressive picture!
The Panasonic fall replacement was the DMP-BD30, but it lacks key features of the DMP-10A.
I purchased a DMP-10AK at Circuit City on close-out for $399.99 The BD-10AK I purchased included 5 free Blu Ray titles, and I get to order another five in the mail. I say if you can find this deal BUY IT IMMEDIATELY!
The BD-10AK is a BD-10A but with a firmware upgrade. THe Panasonic website has a posted firmware upgrade for BD-10's and BD-10A's that upgrades them to the "AK" series. My firmware on the AK series is 2.3. I noticed the firmware on the site is version 2.0.
THe quality of the video is spectacular! I was watching "Rocky Balboa" on Blu-Ray Disk, and could not believe the realistic skin tones and crystal clear crowd scenes in the fight scenes. Unlike the new BD-30 series Panasonic Blu Ray player, the BD-10 series has DVD-Audio and boy does it deliver the goods if you listen to a native DVD-Audio disk. Its a nice feature, and I don't understand why Panasonic did not include that in the BD-30 series.
Video upscaling to 1080P is unbelievable. I have a Sharp 42 inch 1080P native LCD display. I recently watch Resident EVIL: Extinction. THe upscaling was so good I thought I might have a Blu-Ray version of the movie!
Another advantage of the BD-10 series is that it has on board decoding of the advanced audio codecs from Dolby Digital and DTS. I have an older Marantz receiver capable of 6.1 audio. Sure I can bitstream a Optical or Coaxial feed from the player but my receiver can only decode the older DTS and Dolby codecs. With the Panasonic's on board decoding I can run the audio for the Panasonic in PCM mode and have fully uncompressed audio of the new movie sound codecs! Works great! That reason alone was enough to put my purchase over the top.
I don't understand why CNET does not like the remote control. It an elegant remote and not like the cheesy plastic that LG provides with its advanced BH200 player.
Also, CNET critizes the flip down front cover. I like it. The reflective mirror finish is very nice looking and disguises the player controls. It's much more contemporary looking for the living room than a BD-30. Why have a pathetic DVD/VCR look? Kudo's to Panasonic for its brillant cosmetic design.
True, the BD-10A does not have Final standard profile, 1.1, or 1.2, but who cares? It will be at least a couple of years before we really see any Blu-Ray titles with these features. Plus the BD-10 series plays back CD's, DVD's, DVD-R and many other formats that LG, Samsung, Toshiba, and Sharp don't allow.
My wish is Panasonic would offer an identical unit to the BD-10AK, which include SACD playback. Then you would be able to handle any major format in one unit! But, most folks don't care about great music anymore. MP3 audio at 128KPS or 320 KPS is pathetic for real music listening people! MP3 formats (including AAC are really only for headphones while you travel.) Try a DVD-Audio and listen to NEIL Young in Multi channel audio and you will not use MP3 at home anymore!
Don't be fooled by the interactive "final standard profile" talk. Probalbly you won't use any of those features. Buy a BD-10A or better the BD10AK(so you don't have to upgrade the firmware) now and enjoy a great product for few years.
Now if you want a pretty good combo HD-DVD and BLu-Ray player, try the BD-UP5000 from Samsung. IF HD-DVD disapppears you can buy up all of the HD-DVD's at close out prices and have the best of all worlds, but sadly the Samsung unit has no DVD-Audio.
I never cared about a Sony Play Station 3 which can play Blu-Rays's because I am not a gamer, and because it did not support many of the advanced audio codecs or DVD-Audio. It just did not fit my needs.
Panasonic BD10AK has no ethernet connection, but you only want that if you use using interactive features and I don't care. Most Blu-Ray disks have no interactive features anyway.
Right now, I'm thinking of buying a second BD-10AK for the bedroom. At $399 for a deck priced originally around $1000, its too good a deal.
Pros Picture quality, outputs
Cons Remote, front flip panel
Summary I evaluated this player head-to-head against the latest Sony model (sorry, don't have the number). I used both a normal DVD (Planet Earth, disc one, Pole to Pole episode) and a Blu-Ray disc (Pirates of the Caribbean). I also ran the normal DVD through a basic Panasonic DVD player with HDMI output, just for giggles.
The results surprised me. The Planet Earth disc is 480p, so I thought the normal Panasonic would produce the same picture from this disc as the other two--I was very wrong! The normal DVD player didn't hold a candle to the other two. Switching from the normal DVD to the Blu-Ray was like going from standard def to high def TV.
I then focused on the two Blu-Ray players. The Sony was first, and during the intro scenes on the Planet Earth disc, there are several moments where there is something relatively small on the screen, like a man's hands and feet, a frogs legs, etc. In all cases where there was fast vertical action on the screen, the Sony produced very noticeable horizontal lines on these small items. The Panasonic BR player was perfect in this respect.
With Blu-Ray discs, both players were stunning, as expected. Both have lots of outputs, etc. so it was easy to choose the Panasonic over the Sony (and I am a long-time loyal Sony customer).
Gripes about the Panasonic--
--It has a flip-open front panel that must be opened to load discs. Minor inconvenience.
--Load times are slow, but I've had other Panasonic DVD players, and this has always been the case with this brand
--Remote control is so-so--it's better than previous Panasonics I've had, but still lacking. My main gripe would be the lack of backlighting, and the distance between the scroll wheel and the play button.
--Also related to the remote, it has a flip-open top to access less-used functions. While I appreciate fewer buttons on the front, my 3-year-old promptly broke the front flip off--I was able to repair it, but I'd keep this one away from your kids.
--Maybe this is my ignorance of the Blu-Ray format, but I can't figure out how the hell to go straight to the menu when I load a disc. On Pirates, there are seven previews, and then a talking skeleton that you must endure before you can do anything. I can use the skip button to pass each of these, but I want to just go straight to the menu. When I press "pop-up menu" during the movie, I get the menu, but when I press this button during the previews, nothing happens. Reminds me of some old DVDs where they forced you to watch every freakin' preview every time you inserted the disc. I would copy these for backup and break the Macrovision stuff so I could get on with it. Doubt that's possible with Blu-Ray, but maybe someone can tell me how to access the menu!!!
I paid $499 for the player at Circuit City, and since they couldn't find the box (to get the barcode for the 5 free Blu-Ray movies offer), they just gave me 5 Blu-Ray movies of my choice.
I would buy this player again, because in the end it's all about picture quality. I can live with the remote.
Hope this helps you, and enjoy the show!!